April 26, 2014 by Alicia
It was me against the window. From the very first time we walked through our house with our realtor last year, I hated the living room window treatments. Here is a (poor) shot from our walk through of the house with all the previous owners’ stuff in it:
It took me MONTHS to figure out what to do. The window is 108″ wide and I needed panels about 95″ tall. Did you hear that sound? CHA CHING! Curtain panels are already wildly expensive, but for that size of a window, we are talking some serious shekels. I needed curtains big enough so they could actually close and cover the window. These were to be functional, not just decorative. I needed 2 panels that were a bare minimum of 60″ wide each. Standard curtains are only 44″ wide. Home decor fabric is only 56″ wide (to make my own). I only wanted 2 panels. I didn’t want to do 4 panels. So regular curtains and making my own from raw fabric were both not options. Then I decided to use tablecloths. A regular size of tablecloth is 60″x104″ so I knew I could make that work. But I wanted a big bold pattern. So I scoured the internet and stores and could not find a tablecloth I liked for a price I was willing to pay. So that was a no-go. THEN I thought about cotton shower curtains. Those are 72″ wide which would be awesome, but they’re also only (usually) 72″ tall. Ugh. So like I said, months went by before I got a game plan together.
FINALLY I figured out what to do. I would get 100% cotton shower curtains, and then attach other fabric to the bottom to make them long enough. I chose this route because I wanted wider fabric (72″) and there are TONS of options of cute shower curtains! I found the shower curtains I wanted, nice and bold 🙂 So I went hunting for a neutral coordinating fabric to add to the bottom. But I found that just normal home decor fabric was such a different feel/texture than the shower curtain so it felt very piecemeal-ed together. Ugh. So then I decided to get another neutral shower curtain to add to the bottom so that the feel/texture/weight would be very similar to the rest of the curtain. Finding a neutral curtain proved to be the easiest part of this whole process.
Let’s jump to the curtain rod real quick. Remember when I said the window was 108″ wide? Well the cheapest curtain rod at Walmart that would reach that far was $45 (and it’s super ugly) so that just tells you how much a cute rod was going to run me. But alas! A solution! IKEA!!! I got a curtain rod/brackets/finials for $17.50! And the rod reaches up to 152″ wide. Score! They also have cheaper curtain rings/hooks. I got 2 packs of 10 for $2.99 each. A similar product costs $8-10 at home improvement stores. Can I get an AMEN for IKEA?!
Anyway, back to the curtain. I had planned to use hem tape to attach the neutral fabric to the bottom of my shower curtains. That’s how I created these curtains. But my BFF’s mom sews really well so I asked her to help me out. Usually I just figure out a way to do it myself so I don’t have to bother anyone else. But I didn’t mind asking her because I knew it was basically just a straight seam attaching the two fabrics – nothing that complicated. If you’re a beginner seamstress, I’m sure you can do it!
So let’s simplify the process here. Buy a rod. Buy the fabric. Attach the fabric. Iron the curtains. Hang the rod. Hang the curtains. Sit down with a glass of sweet tea and admire your amazing and affordable curtains (assuming it’s nap time).
Are you dying to know how much my GINORMOUS curtains cost? Let’s break it down:
Bold shower curtains: $19.96 ($9.98 each on clearance)
Neutral shower curtain: $19.99 (only needed one and cut it for 2 panels)
Curtain rod/brackets/finials: $17.45
Curtain rings/hooks: $5.98
Total: $63.38 (an extra $5 if you need to buy hem tape)
For such a huge window – I consider this project a huge success! See for yourself:
Side note – I went back to the store to get the same bold shower curtain to use to cover some pillows for that room and the curtains had gone down AGAIN on clearance to $5.98! Target sales can be your best friend!
How about you? Have you ever “crafted” your own curtains? How did it go? Have you figured out how to take good pictures of curtains (natural vs. artificial light)?